Zwarte Piet court ruling should be speedy: Council of State

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The Netherlands State Council will come with a ruling on Zwarte Piet sooner than the usual nine months it would take the highest administrative court to make such a ruling. Spokesperson for the Council, Pieter-Bas Beekman says that the matter is being picked up "with haste", the Algemeen Dagblad reports. 

The Council may expedite the process if there is an urgent need. Beekman says that this reason is present in the Piet debate, as it is in "the interest of society." It is hoped that this ruling will come before 'pakjesavond', on 5 December.

The highest administrative court is addressing the appeal submitted by the municipality of Amsterdam and The Pieten Guild last week, against an earlier ruling by the Amsterdam court, saying that Piet is indeed "a negative stereotype", as many have argued. This, to the surprise of Piet supporters.

The Pieten Guild is against that ruling. Co-founder Marc Giling states that Piet has nothing to do with the history of slavery, as opposers argue. Mayor Eberhard van der Laan of Amsterdam believes that the ruling should be re-addressed, but does not have anything against giving Zwarte Piet some changes in the mean-time.